Piercings have always been fashionable and a great way to personalize your look and style. Whether you want a classic ear piercing or something like a nose or an eyebrow piercing, body jewelry is a great way to add some edge to simple outfits or to show off your style in another way. Piercings are beautiful and fun, but they are a responsibility. You need to care for piercings properly to keep them looking good and feeling healthy. Here’s the best way to do this.
Ask your piercer to use a needle, not a gun
A piercing gun forces the earring through the skin with pressure and can cause a lot of unnecessary damage to the surrounding tissue. It’s also very hard to properly sterilize a tool that is made with plastic parts, which piercing guns are, so you can’t be sure how sterile it really is, risking infection. With a needle, there is a lot more control, and the process is completely sterile so you know you’re safe from infection. Piercing with a needle is like surgery. A small incision is made into the tissue, with minimal damage to the surrounding area. The pain of a needle is also very minor compared to a piercing gun, whether you’re having a nose or rook piercing.
Choose quality jewelry
Buy the best jewelry that you can afford, especially if your skin tends to be sensitive. Some people can only wear certain metals and can have allergic reactions to others, so check what you’re buying, whether it’s cheap costume earrings for fun outfits, or a quality pair for everyday wear.
Keep yourself healthy
While your piercing is healing, you need to make sure you are caring for your overall health to help the healing go as well as possible. Keep your body hydrated. A healthy diet is important all the time, but especially after a new piercing to give your body the fuel it needs to heal. Make sure you avoid any additional trauma to the area too. Many irritations are caused by bumps, snags, or sleeping on the piercing, so be careful with it.
Keep it clean
You need to keep a new piercing clean to reduce the risk of infestation. Wash your fresh piercing twice a day with soap and water or saline solution. In the past, the usual advice was to clean new piercings with alcohol, but this can actually dry the piercing out, so isn’t the best option. If the area around the piercing gets too dry, it can crack and bleed, causing the wound to stay open which is very uncomfortable. Oil-based soaps or saline solution is better. They clean the wound and provide oils to soften the healing tissue. Ask your piercer for the best products to use.
Create a routine
Before you touch your new piercing, make sure you always wash your hands thoroughly with soap and water. Moisten the piercing with clean fingers, and clean the area. Rinse with warm water. Get into a routine to help with the cleaning, so you don’t forget about it.
Know what to expect
Some piercings will need slightly different care than others, and will different periods of time to heal. You should know that a cartilage piercing will require more care than lobe piercings, for example. Any piercing that is in this cartilage area will be more temperamental during the healing process. These piercings feel the same to get as lobe piercings but can be more difficult to heal, so it’s important to be prepared. Ask your piercer what to expect and for their advice on aftercare.
Watch for healing
Piercings in the ear lobes will usually take two or three months to heal, while cartilage piercings can take three to ten months. Once the piercing has stopped hurting, the swelling has gone done, it stops secreting fluid, and redness disappears, your piercing has healed. Know what signs to look for so you know when it’s done.
Help the healing
Getting a piercing to completely heal will take patience. Your body naturally wants to reject anything it recognizes as foreign objects. You have to be patient and take the time to nurse the area back to health. Sometimes, simple solutions are the best. Clean with soap and water. Treat any swelling with ice. Take aftercare seriously and you can avoid problems.
If you do notice a problem with your piercing, like excessive swelling, redness, or radiating heat, your piercer should be your first port of call for advice.